Former Chicago Bears defensive end Ray McDonald has been charged with felony false imprisonment stemming from his May 25 domestic violence arrest, the Santa Clara County District Attorney's office announced on Thursday.
McDonald was also charged with misdemeanor domestic violence, child endangerment and with violating a court order that he stay away from the victim.
He was arrested on domestic violence and child endangerment charges in May after being accused of physically assaulting the alleged victim while she was holding an infant. The Bears later released McDonald that same day.
In a statement on Thursday, prosecutor James Demertzis said, “It is unconscionable and illegal for any woman to be trapped, whether it be behind a dining room table or in a relationship filled with fear and violence.”
McDonald will be arraigned on Thursday afternoon and faces up to three years in prison if convicted.
Just two days after the May arrest, McDonald was arrested again for violating a restraining order in Santa Clara, Calif.
Last month, the San Jose Mercury News obtained the restraining order and found that his ex-fiancée accused McDonald of repeatedly attacking her over the course of several months.
The Bears signed McDonald to a one-year contract in March before releasing him. The 30-year-old was released by the San Francisco 49ers in December due to what the team called a "pattern" of behavior by the player.
Last November, McDonald was cleared after an investigation into an alleged domestic violence incident at his home. He was arrested on Aug. 31 on suspicion of felony domestic violence, and after the investigation, the district attorney said it did not find sufficient evidence to press charges and characterized it as a "physical struggle between two parties, each party blaming the other."
In December, the San Jose Police Department said McDonald was being investigated for a possible sexual assault. No charges were brought against McDonald in that case, and he later brought a defamation suit against the accuser. The defamation suit was dismissed by a judge last month.
- Molly Geary